Thursday, September 09, 2010

US 100k

The US 100k Classic is held every Labor Day morning in Atlanta, GA. The race does 11 laps over a 9k circuit and makes a turn off for the finish about a mile to go. It is a rolling course, but none of the hills are so big and it is held on highways. It usually favors a bunch sprint. For me it was my last opportunity this year to get a big result. A break went early in the race (only after a couple of miles) with 7 or 8 riders. The Ion United Healthcare Team had Spencer Gaddy in the move. Tiago Depaula (Depaula Racing), Oscar Clarke (Mountain Khakis), and a Hincapie rider were some of the other riders in the break. That break gained 3 or 4 minutes after a couple of laps and looked like it was going to stick for the race. Then George Hincapie (BMC), Craig Lewis (HTC-Columbia), and a Fly V rider went to the front and started to chase the break back. The gap did not really come down at all at the beginning. Eventually with 2.5 laps to go the break got brought back and there was a counter of about 15 guys. This move included my teammates Andy Baker and Bryan Hill. I was riding second wheel and a Litespeed BMW rider jumped and I got on his wheel. The group just let us ride off the front. The Litespeed guy got me halfway to the break and I jumped him and bridged the rest by myself. Shortly after I made contact Joey Rosskopf (Mountain Khakis) and Phil Gaimon (Kenda) attacked and I went with them. An Aerocat rider bridged to us and this made the winning move. Phil rode hard on one of the hills on the back side of the course and dropped the Aerocat rider, so I knew I would at least make the podium. I did not miss a turn on the front with Phil and Joey but did not work as hard as they did because I wanted to be able to respond to any attacks. We went into the final mile with over a minute gap. With about a kilometer to go Phil jumped and Joey was right on his wheel. I was a little slow to respond but was sitting last wheel in the downhill sprint. I made contact at about 300 meters to go but hesitated. At 200 meters to go I jumped but Joey had more of a jump and took the win. He really rode a perfect race. I took second and Phil third. Maybe I should have used the momentum I had at 300 meters to go but am not sure if I would have beaten Joey even if I did. He has a really good sprint and ran a really good race. I am very happy with my second place at this race. First of all I would like to thank God who helped me in my training and during the race. Secondly, I'd like to thank my wife Sara and coach Bob Tyler who believed in me all this time. I'd also like to thank Eric Murphy and the Ion-United Healthcare team for supporting me even though I was not performing well this season until recently. Also I would like to thank Spencer Gaddy for riding hard in the break all day long, so I did not have to do any work in the group.